About the Department

Classical Studies is a multi-faceted discipline, which studies all aspects of the Ancient Greek and Roman Worlds. Amongst the famous names, places and periods we associate with these two civilisations you will study Homer, Plato, Greek drama and the context of its performance, the Athenian Acropolis, the origins of democracy, the interaction of Greek and Roman cultures, Julius Caesar and Cicero, the rise of Rome and its volatile political life as a Republic ruling a huge overseas empire and finally Roman society at all levels under the sway of emperors.


Despite the period of antiquity in which it concentrates, the field of classics is constantly changing in light of new discoveries, new methodologies, new interpretations, and new relationships with other areas of study. In many ways classics offers the undergraduate student an ideal educational opportunity to integrate different fields and methodologies, and to study intrinsically interesting and time-tested topics in the literature, mythology, art, archaeology, history, and science of Greece and Rome. We offer an opportunity to pursue studies in all these areas at the undergraduate (B.A.) and graduate (M.A. and Ph.D.) levels. On the undergraduate level, it is possible to integrate these studies with studies in other departments of the University.

We offer three different programs of undergraduate study: a Greek program, in which students learn the language of ancient Greece, a Latin program in which the language of ancient Rome is taught, and a program of classical civilization, in which students learn neither language but study works in translation. Each program also included general courses on specific genres, authors or topics. These include subjects such as classical mythology, philosophy, women in the ancient world and the interaction between Jews, Greeks and Romans. Other courses consider the ancient world’s interaction with our own, through the medium of film and television, or take a practical approach to subjects such as ancient drama, through studying and staging a classical production. Seminar courses focus in depth upon subjects such as the writing of ancient history or biography, Greek drama or the portrayal of the ancient world in modern popular culture. In general, classes are small, allowing for individual attention and strong feeling of community and support within the department.

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